Developed by Zootfly and published by Ubisoft we have the video game of the awesome action crammed movie, Expendables 2, available to download on PC, PS3 and XBOX360. It’s a 4 player co-operative shoot ‘em up full of blood, bullets, explosions and a few familiar faces from the silver screen. Now I’ll tell you straight away, that this game is nowhere near as good as the film. I mean it’s impossible to fit that much action, cheesiness and all round awesome into a video game. But that doesn’t mean it’s a bad game. Like any title it has its ups and downs, and it’s my job to inform you of what they are so let’s dive right into the explosive action. I should make aware though for this review I played the game on the XBOX 360, so my experience may differ from other platforms.
So as usual let’s start with the story of the game. You can pick from 4 of the characters from the film; Barney (Stallone), Gunner (Lundgren, also my favourite character), Caeser (Crews) and Yin Yang (Jet Li). It’s all business as usual as you pick up a new job; contracted to extract a target from behind enemy lines. But as usual when these guys get involved, it doesn’t quite go to plan and soon all hell breaks loose and “the explosive mix of testosterone and kerosene detonates in a massive fireball that never lets up as the relentless action concludes where the new movie begins.” (http://www.ubi.com/UK/Games/Info.aspx?pId=10961). Throughout the game you’ll get to battle in mysterious foreign lands ranging from Somalian deserts to the Burmese Jungle, and you’ll have to alter your approach to each area having to apply logic to plan your assaults, and approach enemies with stealth, occasionally going in to battle without your trusty guns and only using melee attacks.
Now for me it was disappointing to only be able to pick from four characters because they missed some good ones out, luckily though they kept two of my favorites in with Gunnar and Caeser. I also thought the aim and movement of characters were a little stiff at times, and that’s pretty much all the negatives out the way for me. The rest of the game I really liked. I mean for a game available only from the XBOX Live Arcade, the graphics were better than most I’ve downloaded, and I’m not sure if they got the real cast to voice act for it, but if they never, the impressions are really good. I also enjoyed the sound effects of your bullets spraying across the battlefield and vehicles exploding, though in terms of gameplay it was pretty average and nothing really stood out. I mean the game claims to be over the top but I think it would realistically rank as a mid-table team if it were in a league of action games.
One positive about the game is that you can play a few different ways; you have the single player campaign in which the computer will control the other 3 characters that you choose not to play as. In addition and as already mentioned previously you can have up to four player co-op as well where you can team up with friends and unleash a can of whoop ass on your enemies. The third mode you can play is a challenge mode where you can push yourself and your friends to the limit to get to the top of global leaderboards to claim to be the most kick-ass action hero in the world. Now the challenges won’t all be available all at once, you’ll have to progress your way through the campaign to unlock bigger and better challenges which makes the game that little bit more rewarding.
I also really enjoyed the vehicular combat scenarios in the game and the signature cinematic kills that you get to perform. The vehicles you have at your disposal are helicopters, planes and jeeps which you can use to your best advantage to inflict as much damage to your enemies as possible. The cinematic kills are special finishing moves that you’ll be given the opportunity to perform on your enemies which get shown with a close-up dynamic camera just to make sure you get to see the action from the best possible angle. If you’re sitting there thinking this seems a lot to take in and you don’t think you’ll be able to cope with everything, don’t worry. The controls are easier to learn than riding a bike. You use the right analogue stick to aim, the left analogue stick to move and the right trigger to fire. You can also switch weapons with Y, but they’re the basics and all you’ll really need to know. Anything else will be told to you in-game like how to upgrade weapons and such.
So overall what can I say about this game? Well it isn’t as good as the movie but for only 1200 MSP it’s a really bargain, you get a campaign that is both fun and has a bit of longevity to it because I mean who doesn’t enjoy going round shooting the crap out of things right? The only downsides really are that you don’t get to select from all of the films characters and the movement is a little stiff. But other than that I really enjoyed playing this, especially when having the mates over for a few beers.
Disclaimer:All scores given within our reviews are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase the game.